California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) on Thursday issued a one-month curfew in response to rapidly rising COVID-19 cases in the state.
Due to the rise in #COVID19 cases, CA is issuing a limited Stay at Home Order.
Non-essential work and gatherings must stop from 10pm-5am in counties in the purple tier.
This will take effect at 10pm on Saturday and remain for 1 month.
Together–we can flatten the curve again.
— Gavin Newsom (@GavinNewsom) November 19, 2020
Newsom’s “limited stay at home” order applies to more than 94 percent of Californians who live in the 41 counties that the state has included in its most restrictive tier, which have recorded significant increases of COVID-19 cases.
In his statement announcing the order, Newsom acknowledged that California reported nearly 200,000 cases last week — a record high in a single day since March — and that COVID-19 cases surged by 50% in the first week of November.
“The virus is spreading at a pace we haven’t seen since the start of this pandemic and the next several days and weeks will be critical to stop the surge. We are sounding the alarm,” Newsom said. “It is crucial that we act to decrease transmission and slow hospitalizations before the death count surges. We’ve done it before and we must do it again.”
In explaining the rationale behind the new order, Newsom alluded to late night activities that are often fueled by inebriation.
“Activities conducted during 10 PM to 5 AM are often non-essential and more likely related to social activities and gatherings that have a higher likelihood of leading to reduced inhibition and reduced likelihood for adherence to safety measures like wearing a face covering and maintaining physical distance,” Newsom said.
In addition to the limited stay-at-home order, California has also implemented a travel advisory recommending that residents avoid nonessential out-of-state travel and to quarantine for 14 days after arriving from another state or country. Masks must be worn by individuals whenever they leave their homes.
Newsom’s order comes on the heels of the backlash he is facing after attending a 12-person birthday party for a top aide and lobbyist at the ritzy dining institution French Laundry in Napa Valley, which executives from the California Medical Association also attended, as the state became the second to record 1 million COVID-19 infections.